20 Other Ways to Say “Sorry to Hear That”

When someone shares bad news or a personal loss, it’s important to respond with empathy and compassion. Instead of the often-used “Sorry to hear that,” there are various other ways to express your condolences and show your support. Here are 20 alternative phrases you can use, complete with scenario examples to illustrate their application.

1. I’m Saddened by the News

Scenario: Email to a colleague who lost a family member

Dear John,

I’m saddened by the news` of your father’s passing. He was a remarkable man, and his legacy will undoubtedly live on. Please let me know if there’s anything I can do to help during this difficult time.

Best regards, Mary

2. My Thoughts Are With You

Scenario: Text message to a friend whose pet passed away

Hi Sarah,

My thoughts are with you after hearing about Bella. She was such a wonderful companion, and I know how much she meant to you. I’m here if you need anything.

Take care, Alex

3. That Must Be Tough to Go Through

That Must Be Tough to Go Through

Scenario: Phone call to a sibling who lost their job

Hey Mark,

I just heard about your job. That must be tough to go through. If you need to talk or want some help with your resume, I’m here for you.

Love, Emily

4. I’m Here if You Need Anything

Scenario: Message to a neighbor who had a house fire

Hi Tom,

I’m so sorry to hear about the fire. I’m here if you need anything at all, whether it’s a place to stay or help with anything.

Warm regards, Jessica

5. Please Accept My Heartfelt Condolences

Scenario: Letter to a distant relative after a bereavement

Dear Aunt Susan,

Please accept my heartfelt condolences on the loss of Uncle George. His kind spirit touched us all, and he will be greatly missed.

Sincerely, Robert

6. I’m Holding You in My Heart

Scenario: Social media post to a friend going through a divorce

Hi Claire,

I’m holding you in my heart during this tough time. Remember, you’re not alone, and we are all here for you.

Hugs, Natalie

7. It’s Heartbreaking to Hear This

Scenario: Email to a coworker dealing with a serious illness

Dear Steve,

It’s heartbreaking to hear this news about your health. I’m wishing you strength during this difficult time and hoping for your speedy recovery.

Best wishes, Linda

8. Wishing You Strength During This Difficult Time

Scenario: Sympathy card to a friend whose parent passed away

Dear Paul,

Wishing you strength during this difficult time. Your father was an incredible person, and his memory will live on in all of us who knew him.

With sympathy, Jennifer

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9. You Have My Deepest Sympathy

Scenario: Condolence message to a colleague after a sudden loss

Hi Rachel,

You have my deepest sympathy for the sudden loss of your brother. If there’s anything you need or if you just want to talk, I’m here for you.

Take care, Michael

10. I Can’t Imagine What You’re Going Through

Scenario: Note to a friend after a personal tragedy

Dear Karen,

I can’t imagine what you’re going through right now. Please know that my heart goes out to you, and I’m here if you need anything at all.

Warm regards, David

11. My Heart Goes Out to You

Scenario: Email to a friend who experienced a miscarriage

Dear Lisa,

My heart goes out to you during this incredibly difficult time. I can’t begin to understand your pain, but I’m here to support you in any way I can.

With love, Sophie

12. I’m Here to Support You

I'm Here to Support You

Scenario: Text to a friend going through a tough breakup

Hey Jake,

I’m so sorry to hear about the breakup. I’m here to support you and help you through this. Let’s meet up soon and talk.

Best, Tom

13. Sending You Love and Comfort

Scenario: Sympathy card to a colleague dealing with loss

Dear Emily,

Sending you love and comfort during this time of loss. Your grandmother was such a lovely person, and she will be missed by all who knew her.

Sincerely, Daniel

14. I’m Truly Sorry for Your Loss

Scenario: Email to a friend after a family member’s death

Hi Laura,

I’m truly sorry for your loss. Your sister was an amazing person, and her memory will live on in all who loved her.

With deepest sympathy, James

15. You’re in My Prayers

Scenario: Message to a religious friend after a tragedy

Hi Maria,

You’re in my prayers during this difficult time. I hope you find the strength and peace you need to get through this.

God bless, Anna

16. Thinking of You in These Difficult Times

Scenario: Letter to a relative experiencing a loss

Dear Uncle Bob,

Thinking of you in these difficult times. Aunt Margie’s passing is such a great loss. Please let us know if you need anything.

With love, Cathy

17. My Sincerest Condolences

Scenario: Email to a business associate after a loss

Dear Mr. Thompson,

My sincerest condolences on the passing of your wife. If there is anything I can do to assist during this time, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Warm regards, Edward

18. I’m Here for You, No Matter What

Scenario: Text message to a close friend going through a hard time

Hey Sam,

I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I’m here for you, no matter what. Let’s catch up soon and talk about it.

Take care, Ben

19. I’m Sorry You’re Going Through This

Scenario: Email to a colleague dealing with a personal crisis

Dear Jessica,

I’m sorry you’re going through this tough time. If you need to take some time off or need any help with your workload, please let me know.

Best, Chris

20. I’m Here to Listen if You Want to Talk

Scenario: Message to a friend coping with a difficult situation

Hi Emma,

I’m here to listen if you want to talk about what’s been going on. You don’t have to go through this alone.

Take care, Lucy


In conclusion, expressing condolences and support requires sensitivity and compassion. Using these alternative phrases can help convey your heartfelt sympathy more meaningfully. Remember, the key is to be sincere and offer genuine support, whether through words, actions, or simply being there for the person in need.

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